Crawls Backward (When Alarmed)

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Neck Removal on the Kay K22 Acoustic Guitar

The fingerboard is off the Kay guitar.  Now we can remove the neck and rout it for the truss rod

I mentioned before that apparently the guitar had a bolt run through the heel some time ago.  Jake from Antebellum Instruments (see my links) changed out the bolt and ran it though a strap button to cover the old hole.  A clever repair.  Now I need to undo it.

I always feel a little strange using big tools on guitars - most guitar tools are smaller and need finesse.  The ratchet looks a little strange inside an acoustic guitar, doesn't it?

And naturally, I somehow managed to snap the bolt off.  But you can see how Jake ran the bolt through the button.  I may just put a new one in once the neck's done.

Kays are notorious for bad neck joints.  I think they cranked out so many guitars that they scrimped on craftsmanship.  Unlike Martin, whose work is nearly perfect.

Let's get the neck off, shall we?

Here's the guitar in my homebrew neck removal jig.  This thing is irreplaceable for neck removal.

The 'plate' halves tighten down over the guitar body and hold it firmly in place.

Then the center screw puts pressure on the neck heel to drive the neck out of the dovetail.

All of the pieces have cork on them to avoid scratching or denting the guitar parts.

Now we need steam!

I have a Krups ex-cappucino maker with a big hose on it to make steam.  The business end of the hose has a needle to inject ze steam!

Insert the needle into the dovetail and turn on the steam.

This was the easiest removal ever.  With the fingerboard off, I didn't need to drill any holes into the joint as you normally would.  Just put the hose in that gap and work away.

Some steam, some wiggling, some tightening up on the pressure screw and voila! the joint comes apart.

While I have the steam going, I use it to loosen up the old glue and scrape it off.

Hide glue is so great to work with.  The mating surfaces are cleaned up in no time.


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